Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Do you doodle?

My grandkids doodle all the time. They didn't take after me in the art department and, therefore, are very talented.

We have been having requests for larger t-shirts. We added Youth Organic Tees in Natural and White. They are from the same company of our toddler's tees and the same high quality.

I wanted to create a specialty line in the youth tees also. I asked Alex to come up with some of her "doodles" around some well known song titles. I loved what she designed. They're actually what I had in my mind. Just something fun to wear.

We currently have four designs and are working on more.

Cole has his favorite on. I couldn't talk him into "Girls just want to have fun!"

Monday, December 28, 2009

What a Merry, Merry Christmas!!

These are my kids on Christmas. Christmas this year was Saturday, December 26. Christmas is whenever we are together. We were all snowed in on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day; but we were safe; nobody on the roads or traveling. We had our Christmas with the Kramers and brother, Curt. What a blessing.
My Christmas prayer to all of you - take time to review your life. If you have someone to care about, whether family or friend, you are blessed. It doesn't either matter if you were alone this holiday; if at one time in your life, you loved; you are blessed. Hold on to that memory.

Happy holidays from the Ronfeldts.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


At http://www.rubij.com/, the current special is the Animal Tails girls long-sleeved organic tee with the Seahorse original design.

Here's what the hang tag that comes with the t-shirt says:
"People ask 'what is love?' Well seahorses have the answer: we are ultra romantic. Every morning we start the day with a dance. We change into different colours to keep the romance alive. The dance lasts ten minutes, then we separate for the rest of the day so as not to risk getting on each others nerves. We remain partners for life.

What's great about being a female seahorse is we don't have the babies, ha ha yes the men have them not one or two, but about 1000 a year. That may sound a lot but we are now endangered. We like to hang out in the same place, so when fishermen find us we are an easy catch. We are too pretty for our own good as we look fabulous in aquariums. We are also caught in large numbers for use in herbal medicines for fertility treatment"

I don't know about you, but the male seahorse seems like my kind of man. Monogamous, mate for life, takes you dancing every day, doesn't get under foot for the rest of your time and has your babies for you. What more could a woman want?

On a more serious note, several species of these magical creatures are endangered. How sad.

(Photograph by George Grall)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

My Christmas gift to you.

I have thought long and hard and came across the perfect gift to give you. You'll love it. It will  last forever. What could this wonderful package be?

I'm giving you the opportunity to change a human life.

What is this magic you say? Please, let me know the secret.

Simple. A book.  Not just any book; but a book that is one's own. No one else. No second hand. My own book. 

Oh Oh, I feel your disappointment. You thought a present to hold. Well, it is a present to hold; in your heart. You that know me, know how important it is to open the world to children through books.  You also know as a child of poverty, the unprivileged children of the world are my soul mates. That's the reason the First Book Foundation is Rubi J's main charities.

Here's one of their stories:
"We are driven to reach every child because once you meet these kids and see the light in their eyes when they receive books of their own, you can never forget them. One little boy at a book distribution asked for a book on carpentry and we had one that suited him perfectly. Before leaving, he came up to return the book. We told him it was his to keep and watched as his eyes grew big and he tucked the book under his arm and left the room, looking back every few steps to be sure we weren't kidding!"

In 2009 First Book celebrated their 17th year and 65,000,000 book distributed.

Now; here comes the exciting news. Randon House for Children Books has pledged to match book for each book donated through December 31, 2009, to First Book. Double your donation; double your gifts.

Can you find it in your heart to give $5.00 to open the world to a child. You might be the one who saves him or her. What a gift!!!!

Go to http://www.firstbook.org/ to receive your gift of giving.

Monday, December 7, 2009

To bamboo or not bamboo.

I've been researching bamboo clothing to add to the Rubi J Store. Bamboo doesn't have to be certified organic. It just is. Bamboo grows without pesticides or fertilizers added. It's recognized as a green material by several organizations.
Bamboo Facts I have learned:
  • Produces up to 35% more oxygen than trees.
  • Absorbs four times as much carbon than trees.
  • Has natural anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties.
  • Matures for harvest in less than 4 years.
  • Regenerates itself without replanting.
Exciting news, isn't it? But wait. Here's the rest of the story. The harvesting and processing of bamboo into the incredibly soft fabric is more complicated. 

There are two different ways to process bamboo into fabric - mechanically or chemical. Mechanically is a longer and much more expensive process, but does not use harmful chemicals. Chemically process bamboo is much cheaper and faster. You can probably quess what system most manufacturers use.

You may have seen where some bamboo products carry the Oeko-Tex Standard 100 Certification. This is a good sign. Oeko-Tex is an independent organization that looks for toxicity in the processing of fabric. To receive the Oeko-Tex100 certification, the fabric tested must not have any substances that are prohibited by law, carcinogenic or suspected of being harmful to health. If does not mean harmful chemicals to the body or environment have not been used; only none is left in the fabric.

There is also Oeko-Tex Standard 1000 certification. This certifies that the manufacturing process is environmentally friendly and at least 30% of their production is certified with their Standard 100.

Neither one of these certifications address fair labour practices.

So, would I buy bamboo clothing for myself? Probably. Would I sell bamboo clothing for babies and children? Not yet.

For more information, go to http://www.oeko-tex.com/.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Fly like an eagle.

The golden eagle is another one of Animal Tails endangered species organic t-shirts. Here's what the hang tag says that accompany each tee:
"I am call a Golden Eagle because I have a striking golden crown and nape. I'm sacred in some cultures and my feathers are central to many religious and spiritual customs, expecially amongst Native Americans. Mexico even made me their national bird.
There are only 420 pairs of us in Great Britain. We like mountains so live in the Scottish Highlands. A pair of Golden Eagles remains together for life. Our nests are eyries and we build a few in our territory, which can be up to 160 sq miles. I need this space for hunting. I have very good eye sight and can spot prey from a long distance. I swoop down and kill my dinner with my talons. I can kill a fox outright. My population is getting smaller because I sometimes eat livestock, so people poison and shoot me, but I'm only being a hungry Golden Eagle."

In America the main diet are rodents, rabbits, birds and reptiles. But in the 1950's ranchers perceived the eagle as a threat to their livestock. An estimated 50,000 eagles were destroyed by them. Thank heaven the Golden Eagle has been protected since 1963. The bald eagle has returned to enough numbers to remove them from the endangered list, although they are still protected. Hopefully, the Golden will have the same successful route.

It's no wonder there are many, many legends and lore about the eagle. There is something magical about all birds of prey.

The Golden Eagle is our current "Special" at http://www.rubij.com/.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Nothing to do on Thankgiving but to give thanks

Okay. It's a few days from Thanksgiving, my favorite holiday. Everyone is thinking about Christmas shopping. I'm usually thinking about the Thanksgiviving meal I will prepare and serve to my loved ones. I've had the menu made out weeks ago and the shopping all done. But not this year. Husband Ron told me to take a break for once.

It's daughter Stef's turn to host the Kramer side of her family for Thanksgiving day and mother-in-law Shirley invited us out for that day. I was planning on having Thanksgiving on the following Sunday but Ron said I don't have to work every holiday, one meal is enough. At the time I agreed. Why should I work every holiday.

Now that is a few days away, I realize it doesn't seem like a holiday. I miss it. I miss getting up early and sweating over the stove and counter all morning to serve my family. What's wrong with me?

I know. I feel blessed to have such a loving family sitting around the table enjoying each other company with the food I prepared for them. (Maybe it's an ego trip.) I never really enjoy the meal, just the company.

I should quit whining and enjoy the holiday for remembering our blessings, and I have many.

Take this day of the year and be thankful. I am.

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

The Blue Summit Experience

Last Tuesday evening, daughter Stef and I went to a holiday gathering at the Blue Summit store in Omaha, Nebraska. I think its official name is Blue Summit Global Experience. It's located at 4101 South 120th Street in Omaha.

Believe me, it is a wonderful experience. The gift store's mission is to "create hope, dignity and independence by supporting artisans from developing countries."  There was pottery, books, purses, jewelry, baskets, wall hangings, metal works; the list could go on and on. It was fascinating to wander around the store and read the stories of the artisans and marvel at the workmanship.

I picked up a few Christmas gifts and the vase in the picture for myself.

The next time you're in Omaha, stop in at Blue Summit and try the "experience"  for yourself.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Polar Bear

The week at http://www.rubij.com/ the Special of the Day is the Polar Bear long sleeve organic cotton t-shirt from our "Animal Tails" collection. It's currently 40% off retail.

Let's talk about the polar bear. Everyone recognizes this wonder of the northern ice. I wonder how many kids have had a stuffed polar bear to sleep with at night. And for sure, the polar bear has become the symbol of global warning. Here's what the hang tag says on each of the tees and rompers about the Polar Bear:

"Now a few facts, I'm a brilliant swinner, 60 miles non-stop is OK for me. In fact I love water so much I will spend as much time in the water as on the ice, perhaps that's why I have the Latin name Ursus Maritimus, meaning Sea Bear. I also have partially webbed paws which help me along. As well as that, my paws are an impressive 30 cms across. With paws that big you would expect me to be pretty big too, well I am - actually I'm the largest land carnivore in the world. But despite my impressive statistics, I'm in serious trouble. Climate change and pollution is ruining my food supplies.
What can you do to help? Going organic is a great start to slowing down the pollution problem - you can't do better than an Animal Tails T-shirt with my picture on it! Another great idea is to get your parents to turn down the heating and start wearing a thermal vest - discover the the joys of wearing your own insulation just like me!!
Thank you."

If the Polar Bear is in trouble, so are many other of the smaller carnivores of the Artic. They scavenge the remains of the polar bear's kill for their survival. I know it's fairly unlikely any of us will ever see a polar bear in the wild, but I like to think of them always running free up north.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Organic Living

One of the meanings of  organic is "denoting a relation between elements of something such that they fit together harmoniously as necessary parts of a whole". So when I say organic or organic living, I think living harmoniously with the earth. That may not be academically correct, but it's the way I think; enriching yourself without harming the world. 

That being said; let me tell you about some of my favorite things on my iPod. (You didn't think that was where I was going, did you?)

I love, love, love music. I love, love, love my iPod. But here's the strange thing. When I'm walking the dogs with my iPod; I don't listen to music. I turn on to my free podcasts.

When you access your iTunes, please look at the podcasts. They are awesome. I'm a NPR junkie, so that's most of the  podcasts I download. My two favorites by far are "Wait, wait, don't tell me!" and "Selected Shorts".

"Wait,  wait, don't tell me" is a current events quiz show. I know. Sounds boring, doesn't it? Trust me. If you like wit and social comment, you'll love this show.

"Selected Shorts" is a program dedicated to the celebration of the short story. Two or three short stories are read by actors to a live audience. It is soooo entertaining. I especiality love the ones read by John Lithgow (you know him from "Third Rock from the Sun"). My all time favorite of his is "Indian Country".

Anything you are interested in, you will find a podcast.  Some of my other favorites are "This American Life", "The Pet Hour by Iams" (of course) and the Terri Gross interviews on "Fresh Aire".

Expand your horizans, think outside of the box, think "organically".  Maybe you'll find something to fit "harmoniously" with your life.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Oh look, a puppy!!!!

We all love puppies, don't we. The one in this picture, however, will never be in a pet shop window. These are African Wild Dogs, one of the endangered species on Rubi J's Animal Tails organic t-shirts.

I've been reading about them and, boy, have they ever been given a bum rap.  Sure, they're carnivores; but so are most of us. Not as magnificent looking as the lion or other big cats; they don't get equal press on the nature shows.

Here's what the hang tag that comes with each tee reads:

"Your domestic dogs are related to me. We're found only in Africa, especially in scrub savanna and other lightly wooded areas. Our coats are bespoke design as no two individuals have the same markings.

We hunt in packs and give a mean chase, catching 85% of our prey, poor deers! We look vicious so you would have thought that we howl like wolves, but in fact we chirp like birds when communicating. After a succussful hunt we go home and regurgitate meat for those who stayed behind.

The current estimate for remaining Wild Dogs is approximately 3000. Of these the majority live in the Selous Game Reserve in Tanzania.

Part of the profits of the T-shirt go towards AfriCat, who campaign for our protection."

Encourage your children to learn more about the African Wild Dog and why they are important to the eco-system. The African Wildlife Foundation has a great website: http://www.awf.org/. Also, read more about the Africat Foundation at http://www.africat.org/.

You can see why grandson Cole thinks they're "awesome".

Rubi J's current special is 40% off the African Wild Dog tee. Have a look: http://www.rubij.com/.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


Look up "gratitude" in the dictionary or thesaurus and you will find "appreciation".

I beg to differ.

Gratitude goes so much deeper. I appreciate a fine wine, a superb meal or a delightful movie. Gratitude moves  my body and soul.

I have not always been aware of daily gratitude; but for the last 12 years that how I end my day, expressing gratitude. Try it; you'll like it. You will be amazed how your problems are minimized and the living world is a good place.

Try this for a week. Get into bed at night, either on a notepad or in your head, list the things you are grateful for this day, and this day only; doesn't make any difference how big or small. It could be a kid's giggle; just remember it.  I swear, in one week, you will become a more centered person with this wonderful universe.

So, how do I know this? My husband and I have lived this. Over 12 years ago, Ron and I were faced with our only child's death. She beat the odds and we have her today. It's still too painful for us to talk to each about; but we have our "code". We just say "we're lucky people" and we know. 

Don't go what we went through to discover how wonderful life is. Start your "gratitude" journal today.

Our daughter, Stef, and her daughter, Alex, who is 12 years old.


Thursday, October 29, 2009

Spotlight on elephants

Who doesn't love elephants? They've always been one of my favorites. I love watching them on Discovery or Animal Planet. I've even envision riding on one. I know that will never happen. I love horses, too, but I'm scaried silly every time I'm actually riding on one.

The Asian Elephant is on one of our endangered species t-shirts. The hang tag which comes with each shirt states:

"The difference between me and the African elephant is I have smaller ears, a rounder back, 19 ribs instead of 21, but most of all I am much more friendly. If you ever see an elephant at the circus, it will without doubt be an Asian elephant as we're easily domesticated, and form loving bonds with humans.

The matriarch elephant in a herd is responsible for remembering who is a friend and the traditional migration routes, hence the expression 'an elephant never forgets'. This is one of the reasons for our decline in the wild, if humans have built houses on our migration route we'll trample through their house, rather than go round, which tends to annoy then, so they kill us. We are also heavily hunted for our tusks and now there are only about 32,000 of us left."

Pretty sad, isn't it. Go to the Wildlife Conservation Society at http://www.wcg.org/ to learn more about these amazing animals and the projects ongoing to help support conservation of the Asian elephant.

As you can see kids of all ages and gender love elephants.

We currently have the Asian Elephant as our "Special of the Day".  Take a look at http://www.rubij.com/ for savings of 40% off.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

The power of one.

I just took out the Sunday evening trash pickup. It included 2 bags of lawn clippings for recycling, 1 bin of recyclables and 1 bag of garbage.

Ten years ago it would have meant 4 bags to the landfill.

We're a nation of over 111 million households. Muliply that by 3 extra bags a week to the landfill.

See. We can make a difference.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

We're catching on!

Organic cotton is becoming more mainstream. That's good news for you and your pocketbook. As predicted, the more the demand, the more production and lower prices.

According to The Organic Cotton Market Report, retail sales of organic apparel and home textile products climbed 63% in 2008. The 2008 Organic Cotton Farm and Fiber Report states organic farming worldwide for the 2007/2008 year increased 152%. Wow!

India, where our onesies originated, has overtaken Turkey as the leader in production worldwide. Their production, according to The Organic Trade Association, increased 292%. The United States increased its production in 2008 by 9%.

I have noticed in my web wanderings we in the States are behind in sustainable living than with our friends beyond the pond. I wonder if it because we are such a big country and have so much space. But, times are changing and so are lifestyles.

So; what does this mean to you? As my prices go down; so will yours. Rubi J has reduce the price on all of our onesies products. Check out the website. http://www.rubij.com/

That's little Katherine in one of our custom screen printing onesies.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Leopards, Wild Dogs, Seahorses and Bears, Oh My!!!

I know.  The title doesn't flow. It's just we've added more to our wonderful "Animal Tails" line and I thought this would caught your attention.
We already had the Polar Bear, Seahorse and Snow Leopard in the Rompers Line; but now we added them to the children's tees, along with the African Wild Dog.

I love, love, love Animal Tails. The organic cotton in soft jersy knit is such a winner. The kids love them because they are so cool. The mothers love them because they wear so well.

One of the many, many nice things about being a girl is we can also wear the boys' tees. The girls' tees are too small for my 12 year old granddaughter, but she can wear the 9-10 year size in the boy's because of the bigger cut.

Also, check out our website. We have two new features. "Clearance Sale" on one of a kind; and our new "Special of the Day".

We have been out of the Polar Bear Rompers. They are just too cute. We now have them back in stock. They make the perfect baby gift.

It's been fun restocking and adding new. Now; if the sun would only shine here in Iowa for just a few hours......

Saturday, October 10, 2009

First book

Do you know why I love books? Why they are my passion? Why First Book is the the charity Rubi J supports?


Most of us can feel sympathy. It hurts to see a young one cry. It hurts to see war on the television news.   But how do we feel the same hurt as our fellow human being? We have to be that person; and through books, this is possible.

I'm reading a book right that I don't wholly understand, but it is so powerful in its narrative that I cry from the pain of the life the author was given.

I read all books; fiction and non fiction. I always come away more fulfill as a citizen of the world. I want this for all children.

Technology has made our world smaller. But, we need more for our internal growth than text messaging. We need to connect. We need to learn. We need to empathize.

Let's give the children of the world the tools. Teach your children to  read. Help other children to read.

As Martha Stewart says: "It's a good thing".


Monday, October 5, 2009

Another "Animal Tail"

I've been reading about dermochelys coriacea. That's right, dermochelys coriacea. I'm talking about the Leatherback Sea Turtle, and, of course, I didn't know it either. I can't even pronounce it.

I've been on a personal mission to learn more about the endangered species on our "Animal Tails" t-shirts. It has been equally enlivening and heartbreaking.

According to the National Geographic, the leatherbacks are the only remaining representatives of turtles that traces back more than 100 million years. So how can it be possible, after all this time, they are now designated as endangered under the U.S. Endangered Species Act? Here's their story from the hang tag attached to each tee:

"I am the largest reptile in the world. I'm about 2m (7ft) long and weigh almost 2000lbs. I have huge flippers which propel me around the world. My favourite place though is the Caribbean, that's where I nest. I always return to the same beach to bury my eggs in the sand. The problem is each time I go back there are more and more humans. The amount of times my eggs have got squashed by some kid playing volley ball or parking their deck chair on top of them! But my family have nested there for centuries so I don't see why I should move.

My favourite food is jellyfish, but I mistake plastic bags in the sea for them and that is the main reason for us being endangered. If I eat one it will know kill  me. Please ensure that none of your plastic ends up floating in the sea, it will be the death of me."

So, we are the problem. There is an organization dedicated to saving the leatherback turtle. Larry McKenna's book Almost Gone details their plight. To learn more, go to http://www.saveourleatherbacks.org/.

We can become part of the solution.

That's my grandneice,Julianna, at the zoo.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009


Don't we love our four legged companions and confidants? We lucky people that have looked into the eyes of this other species and felt a connection are privileged and graced.

Having said that; I want to tell you about one woman making a difference. My new friend, Cea, (one, like me, believe dogs have souls) told me about her friend, Starline Nunley. Starline's son was serving in Iraq and, of course, like all mothers ask what she could do to help him in his mission. He told her the government supplied him with everything to assure his safety, but apparently had forgotten about their most faithful soldiers. The temperatures are so hot in Iraq and the dogs have no protection from the heat. These wonderful dogs are the first line of defense in searching for IED (Improvised Explosive Devices).

Being a dog lover, Starline got to work. She started the http://www.supportmilitaryworkingdogs.org/.  This charity provides cooling vests, pads for their feet, water bowls and one toy for their "down time". Learn more about this organization at their website.

My dogs Clifford and Lucy.

This Miracle and Flash. Flash is the little one. She's my sister-in-law, Angie's dog. Miracle is Angie's partner, Mary's dog. They are the best of buddies.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Mommyhood: On Hamsters

Mommyhood: On Hamsters

What's in a name?

In the early 90’s, my husband and I traveled to Israel, where I met a lovely lady name Lira. We were exchanging information about our family when she asked “and what does your daughter’s name mean?” I told I really didn’t know, I had never really thought about it. She was aghast. In her culture, great care is given to name a new baby. The name’s meaning is most important as it will become part of who this person will become.
Huh, I just thought “Stefanie” was cute.
Since then, however, I have been interested in the meanings of names. One of ideas for screen printing at Rubi J’s has been suggesting instead of just the name printed on an onesie or t-shirt; also put the origin and the meaning. That’s now our most popular screen printing we do for baby gifts.
I’ve had more common names like:
Origin: Hebrew
“Who is like God”

Or an unusual name like:
Origin: Yiddish

I’ve had one grandmother order 8 t-shirts in different colors with the same name/meaning on it for her first grandchild. (We grandparents are like that.)

I do my research and then have it preapproved before making the print. There has only been one time it wasn’t accepted. My friend wanted this done for her little grandnephew’s first birthday. The only meaning I could find for Brock was “Badger”. The aunt didn’t want the mother to think she thought little Brock looked like a badger; and since the parents didn’t attend the University of Wisconsin, we drop the name/meaning thing and went with the look of a football jersey.

One of the prettiest ones I did was:
Origin: Latin
“Of the sea”
Doesn’t the name Marisa flow like water? Perfect.

By the way, the name Stefanie means “crowned one”. Very appropriate.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Saving the Blue Whale

Animal Tails is a line of organic infants' and children's clothes Rubi J is extremely proud to offer in the States. Manufactured in Great Britain, Rubi J is one of only two outlets in the U.S. Their line is certified GOTS organic cotton like all our products. But it's a lot more. Their rompers and tees have beautiful original artwork of endangered species. Each garment comes with a hang tag from the animal depicted explaining their plight. Here's the tag for the blue whale:

"I am the largest animal in the world ever to have existed! I weigh about 200 tons; have a heart the size of Volkswagen Beetle, and a human child could crawl through my main artery.

I would be great to hire for large parties as I could inflate about 2000 balloons in one breath. But my appetite is hard to satisfy as I eat 3,600 kg of krill a day.

Sadly there are only about 15,000 of us left due to hunting and climate change affecting our food supplies. Thank goodness for the 1960s, that's when hunting was banned, we were on the verge of extinction. But dating can be tough with so few of us left. Our mating sounds can be heard for 100's of miles. Unfortunately increases in ocean noise due to shipping and seismic surveys conducted by the oil industry are reducing the distances at which they can be heard."

Hopefully, this will inspire your children to research the blue whale and learn about how magnifient this animal that share our universe is.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Toy Shopping

Remember the holiday shopping season last year? I remember it as the "year of the toy recalls". Didn't it seem like every day the news had a new recall to report? Becoming more aware of our littliest citizens' health and future, I think toys should be high of the list of safety.

I first went to the government's sites regarding toy safety. I was sure to find all the answers. A few hours later, the only thing I knew for sure was my neck hurt. Don't get me wrong; there are tons of useful information, like looking up a toy to see if it's been recalled. You might think all recalled toys are off the shelves. That's not always true. Do your homework.

But I'm looking for toys to recommend. So, I researched manufacturers and companies. Here are my top five:
  • HABA building blocks. HABA is a German company that been around since 1938. Their building blocks, and they have many different kinds, will last many generations. Many stores sell them and also online.

  • Kathe Kruse is another German company. It's been around about 100 years. I especially like the "old world" look of the dolls.

  • Rabbit Kinney eco-plush stuffed animals. This is a California company. The stuffed animals come from Indonesia. They're made from 100% soy bean fiber and the stuffing in 100% kapok. Very eco-friendly, very reasonably priced and very, very adorable. That's one from their line above.
  • Clementine Art Kits. All eco-friendly and non-toxic art supplies for the young ones from this Colorado company.

  • The 5th and final: Books. Need I say more?

Friday, September 11, 2009

Are baby bottles safe?

We’ve all seen civil and criminal trials on TV, whether fictional or real. Each opposing team will call their expert witnesses. These witnesses are no “men/women off the street”. They are highly qualified individuals with a zillion letters after their names. Yet, given the same data, they arrive at totally different conclusions. Who are we suppose to believe?

So, in our daily lives, who do we believe what is safe or harmful?

I decided to do a little research of my own on the safety of Bisphenol A, otherwise known as BPA. I’ve been reading reports all week. BPA is either totally, totally safe or one drop will turn your child into a mutant. Clear on that? OK, let’s get in a little deeper.

BPA is an endocrine-disrupting chemical produced in large quantities in our society. It’s used in the production of polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins. The polycarbonate plastics are used in food packaging, water and infant bottles and medical devices among other products. Containers will usually have the symbol “7” or “PC” on it. The epoxy resins are used to coat metal products like food cans. It’s the use in baby bottles that has created the most controversy.

In my quest for answers, I first researched where and who any report was generated. Once this is known, it’s fairly simple to guess what conclusions will be reached.

The report I found to have the least bias was issued by the National Toxicology Program, a division of the National Institute of Health. The website for this and other reports is http://www.niehs.nih.gov/news/media/questions/sya-bpa.cfm.
In short, they found Some Concern for effects on the brain, behavior and prostate gland in fetuses, infant and children at current human exposures to BPA. On a scale on 1 to 5, Some Concern is a 3.

So, read the report and make you own decisions. My thoughts. When it comes to our children, some concern is enough. It’s also enough for some manufacturers. We are starting to see labels stating “BPA-Free”.

This is what I love about living in this society of ours. We always have the right to question.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Changes at the Website!!

It been a while. Sorry. I've been redesigning our website and adding new products. It's taken longer than expected. As you all know, I'm stilling learning this new e-business. There were times I wanted to throw in the towel and ask for help from the grandkids; but pride kept me from not going that route. And; finally, the new and improved site is up and running.

We've added more "Animal Tails" Tee's and rompers. The rompers come in size 3-6 month and would be a perfect baby gift.

Kids can't have enough t-shirts. Our organic tees come in 3 sizes and 7 colors. They, like our onesies, can also be personalized.

Rubi J is having a sale through the month of September on our short sleeved "Animal Tails" t-shirts - 25% off. We are so proud to be carrying this excellent product. The tees are, of course, 100% certified organic cotton. The original artwork of these endangered species is charming; and I especially love the story of the animal that comes on a hang tag with each tee. Animal Tail's motto is "kind to people, the environment and animals". Perfect.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

What am I going to wear this fall?

I've been reviewing the fashion trends for fall '09. Oh-Oh. Trouble ahead.

Number one: The "Strong Shoulder". Ha! What they mean is the shoulder pads from the 80's are back. God help us all. Who can forget Linda Evans and Joan Collins duking it out in "Dynasty" with those lethal shoulder pads. There may be one out of two thousand women who could wear them with any style.

Number two: The "Tight Rolled Jeans". Another throw back to the 80's; except we called them the "French rolled" then. That's when you would take your bell bottoms and tuck and rolled them around your ankles - tight. I never actually left the the house with this fashion statement. After I got done laughing in mirror; I would undo and go out the door with my bells and over sized t-shirt. What a babe.

Number three: Color Pink. Yeh, I'm saved. Pink looks good on me. Just as long as I don't wear a pink sweater with shoulder pads and tight rolled jeans.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Making sense of going "green"

All of us want a better life for our children and grandkids (like my adorable ones in the picture). Where we used to think in terms of better job, bigger house, more money; our aspirations now include a healthier and cleaner environment. “Conservation” is a common word these days. “Social awareness” is making its way up our vocabulary. We all know what “eco-friendly” means. Or do we?
We are bombarded by so many new slogans and catch phrases, we not sure what is “green” and what is just a marketing tool.
I found some of the following phrases and their meanings on http://www.sustainabilitydictionary.com/.

SUSTAINABILTY: Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Very powerful word.
CONFLICT-FREE: A product that can certify it wasn’t obtained through the use of violence. Think “Blood Diamonds”.
CARBON-NEUTRAL: Giving back to the earth what you take. Many manufacturers are now adopting this policy. For example, planting trees to counter act the greenhouse gases created in their production process. Individuals can also strive to become carbon-neutral.
UPCYCLED: Taking disposable items and transforming them into something of greater use and value. Glass is a great example of this.
POST-CONSUMER PRODUCT: Used by one consumer, recycled and remade into another product. Paper products are the first thing that comes to mind. It wasn’t that many years ago where we never saw that little “made from recycle paper” logo. Now it’s everywhere.

I hope I brought you a little knowledge today. Remember, "Knowledge is Power".

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Make a difference with kindness

A few weeks I read the most charming editorial by Bob Greene. I haven't been able to get it out of my mind. Instead of trying to explain it please read it for yourself. It will lift your day.

Please go to:


Thursday, May 28, 2009

These are a few of my favorite (web) things

Daughter Stef and I subscribe and enjoy several newsletters. We decided to start our own monthy newsletter from the Rubi J Store. We're almost finished with our first installment.

The newsletters I mostly enjoy are from some of my favorite websites. Here's a sampling:

The National Geographic has the most awesome website of them all; a little bit for everyone. I especially like their green guide. Log on to http://www.nationalgeographic.com/.
For book lovers go to http://www.shelfari.com/ and join the club. We readers love discussing books and this website gives you the opportunity to find members that share your particular interest.

If you're serious about healthy dieting; the American Heart Association's website is the place to go. They have the highest success rating for taking the pounds off and keeping them off. Go to http://www.americanheart.org/.
Have you ever been in that situation where you've just been invited to society's biggest event and money is a little tight for a new killer outfit? Me neither. But if this happens, there's a website for us: http://www.weartodaygonetomorrow.com/. You can rent designer's clothes at a fraction of the cost. So what if I never have a need; it's a comfort to know I'm covered for all situations.

Another fun fashion site is http://www.christabellescloset.com/. This is a designer's resale site, although many items are new. You can buy an original Marc Jacobs' $1,200.00 handbag for $438.00, or a $600.00 pair of Jimmy Choo's strappy heels for $415.00. Pretty exciting, huh? Yeh, I know. Me, too. But they also have an under $10.00 department where I go.

Or, you can try to win designer clothes. Go to http://www.madberries.com/ and enter contests for some super cool prizes. I'm sure your email address will on a lot of mailing lists, but, hey, that's why we have "spam filter" and a "delete button". Plus, it's fun. And "girls just wanta have fun".

Friday, May 8, 2009


Change. What an amazing word.

Used as a noun, its meaning can be transformation, alteration, substitution, variety or even coins of low denomination

Used as a verb, it could mean to transform, transfer one for another, remove and replace or to pass from one phase to another.

Google the definition of "change" and the list is endless.

Now, use "Change" in a word association exercise and the responses go from "Panic" and "Terror" to "Exhilarating" and "Progress". How could one word have so much power? Why do some fear change while others embrace and thrive with it?
I believe change is good. If we, as a society, never changed; we would not have become a society at all. If no one took a chance; what chance would we have to survive?
I personally enjoy change; especially small ones. They motivate me. I can get tired of cleaning the house until I change the decor or move furniture in one of the rooms. It's a whole new ballgame. I like bigger changes, too. I've always loved a challenge. Not to say I am fearless. Some changes are scary. I can always tell when I'm scared of change. I procrastinate. It's an ugly truth I alone must bear. I have told myself over and over again, I work better under pressure of a deadline; but when I'm fearful, I change the deadline.
What has help me is to answer the question: "What is the worse that could happen?"
Answer: "I'll know what doesn't work and try something else."

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

EARTH DAY is everyday

Our grandchildren on Easter Sunday.

Earth day was April 22. That's when we were to acknowledge and try to do something to improve our planet. I spent the day working in my yard and walking the dogs. PERFECT.

The last two years of research on organic and responsible living have opened my eyes.

My husband and I do live differently than we did 15-20 years ago. We have already became more aware; recycling, fluorescent light bulbs, energy efficiency. We are eating differently, too. I've been reducing the amount of processed food we eat. I am a little surprised how rewarding it has become. It does takes a little more planning, but not as much as I first thought. It's been fun trying new recipes. Not all have been successes. We discovered we didn't like a lot of basil on our pork loins. And we still have some processed food in the house. (I just need a few Lays potato chips occasionally.) The biggest rewards are how much better "real" food taste and how much better we feel.

A great website for finding healthy ways to live and help our planet is http://www.thegreenguide.com/.

Friday, April 3, 2009

And We Had FUN, FUN, FUN.....now that

I know this title means nothing to the "under 50" group; but it marks the beginning of an amazing week for me - starting with Sunday.

Husband, Ron, and I had 4 tickets to the Omaha Symphony Pops concert featuring the Beach Boys on Sunday. We took our grandchildren; Alex, age 11, and Cole, age 7, to share the "magic" with us.

In the '60's, this was Ron's and my first concert date at Rosenbladt Stadium in Omaha, Nebraska, "I know, Grandma; you've told us 3 times already".

Ron and I had a blast; and I think the grandkids enjoyed the catchy tunes; even though they were not as good as Nickelback - "NO WAY".

Monday and Tuesday:
Preparing for the vendor's booth at the ICAN Women's Leadership Conference in Omaha.

Finished reading the Twilight Series. (The series started off sophomoric for me, and then it grabbed me by the heart.)

Stef and I went to Qwest Center to set up the booth. ANTICIPATION!!!!! Couldn't sleep.

Up at 4:30; on the road to Omaha at 6:00 - What will the day bring?

WOW!! What an exhilerating day! We met so many wonderful and interesting people. We loved them and they seemed to like us - it doesn't get better than that.

Slept like a baby last night.....Worked on our new orders......got a foot massage and pedicure.....time with my grandson. Life is good.

THANK YOU.....I love you all.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

My friend

I have a TON of tasks on my "to do" list.

We have a booth to get ready at the "I Can" Woman Leadership Conference in April.

I've found toddler's T-shirts I need to order.

I need to pay my bills and update my accounts.

Our tax returns are ready.

President Obama is speaking to Congress on television.

I'm busy.

Why is it all I can think about is the well being of my friend? She has been tirelessly working to mend and start the healing of a broken family relationship.

We have all had our family issues; some petty, some hurtful and some unvieldy. This is what she is up against - petty, hurtful and unvieldy issues.

She is conquering all. Why? Because she is doing this for love. That's the magic bullit. LOVE.

This is not amazing. It's hard; but not amazing. Working with love in your heart seems to cut through the maze and continues on until the job is done. The only thing I worry about is the drain on my friend. She gives and gives and gives. Let's give her our love and energy (prayers).

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Stage Fright

I finally got back to my blog site. I was even surprised it had been 2 months since my last entry. Sure, I'm been busy getting the website up and running (we became official January 13, 2009).

Yes, we had another family medical crisis. My mother-in-law had colon cancer surgery. The prognosis is excellent. There will be more tests and procedures to made sure.

I have given notice at my paying job. I am now in the progress of training my very competent replacement. Soon, it will be full time marketing www.Rubij.com.

Blogging is part of a new business - "GETTING YOUR NAME OUT".

So. Why have I not been blogging?

Easy answer. I had been away from it long enough it scared me again.
It took my daughter, Stef, a long time to convince me to blog in the first place.

She blogs all the time "Mom, it's easy and fun". It's fun for her because she is an "open" person. She can share her feelings. I've read about her type in "Oprah". I, on the other hand, have a harder thing expressing my passion. It's there; but I'm afraid of opening the door too wide.

So, anyway, I'm back in the saddle. What got me going again? Look at the new picture of Mickey. I forgot about my "stage fright" and remember what is our mission.

You'll be seeing Mickey's new picture on our website as soon as I can figured out HOW to add it; but that's another blog entry.